I totally adore Small Review, both the blogger and the blog, and I was a little miffed that I met her AFTER her Busting the Newbie Blues event was over. Imagine my elation when I discovered that she was jumpstarting the event again this year all throughout the month of January! But, you might be wondering,
What is Busting the Newbie Blues?
In the words of Small Review, this event is designed to:
- Put new YA book bloggers on the map
- Increase blogger interaction
- Start a discussion by sharing our experiences as new bloggers
- Learn about what it was like for established bloggers when they were newbies
I've decided to answer the questionnaire for Established Bloggers, so here we go:
- When did you start your blog? I started my blog on October 5, 2010.
- Do you ever still feel like a newbie? I always end up feeling like a newbie, and, frankly, totally clueless, when other bloggers start talking about things I've never heard of before, like services for bloggers or events taking place.
- What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far? Did you make any mistakes new bloggers can learn from? I think my absolute biggest challenge would be working through my reading pile. And that rounds off to my most notable mistake, which is piling up my plate higher than I can handle, so to speak. I've taken out way too many library books, requested too many ARCs, have too many bought books I haven't yet read, and that's because I get so... desirous for new releases and the books everyone else is talking about, and before I know it I'm swamped. I'm slowly learning to tone it down, but it's still a work in progress.
- What did you find most discouraging about being a new blogger? How did you deal with this? My follower count. It's okay. I admitted it and you can too! :P It used to feel pretty sucky, and, if I'm honest, still kind of does sometimes, when you hop onto another blog and see their GINORMOUS follower count and their vast ocean of ARCs. But, I stopped letting it get to me when I realized that, IT'S TRUE, YOUR FOLLOWER COUNT IS NOT EVERYTHING. I've gone on to countless blogs with 10 million gagillion followers but have one or two comments on their posts. I realized I want a loyal and consistent readership more than I do a 10-digit follower count.
- What do you find most encouraging? Basically what I said above. I like making blogging pals, finding cute and silly and happy comments on my blog posts. And I can't tell you how much MORE of a dork I evolve into when, HOLY COW BABIES, an author tweets me back or compliments a review or a publicist/author replies with a resounding yes to an ARC request/event or interview request. Seriously, when you meet the right people, it's like having the best co-workers in the world beside you at the workplace.
- If you could go back in time and speak with your newbie self, what five bits of wisdom would you tell yourself?
- "What are you doing?! Don't take out so many!"
- "That cool blogger you stalk? Don't be shy, talk to him/her!"
- "You don't need all those! Why aren't you putting them back?!"
- "That blog has 15,000 x10 followers? Don't sweat it. We'll get there eventually."
- "Roll up your sleeves, girl. Blogging is lengthy work."
- What do you like best about the blogs you read? Have you tried to replicate this in your blog? I like that most blogs I read post every day. I like reading blogs on a daily basis, and, I admit, it bothers me when they're gone for more than a couple of days. Because, it's like, WHEN ARE YOU COMING BACK? Why did YOU LEAVE ME? So, I've been working hard to maintain a steady posting rate, in case there are more people that think like me :P
- What do you dislike about blogs you’ve seen? Do you try to avoid this? I don't like it when other bloggers try to bribe you into following their blogs. "I'll follow your blog when you follow mine," that kind of thing. I also don't like it when there's a meme for EVERY post and no reviews or any sort of quality content in sight. I try to keep to only one or two memes a week for this reason.
- How did you bring your blog to the attention of so many people? Honestly, what I did first was read The Story Siren's Blogging Tips. Personally, I think The Story Siren is really excellent at what she does and so I trust her advice. And one of the many things that she suggests is utilizing social networks (like Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, etc.), commenting meaningful things as often as possible on other blogs, and just being active in general around the blogosphere. That means participating in events, blog/giveaway hops, etc. And that's what I've tried to do to the best of my ability.
- When and how did you get your first ARC (or first few ARCs)? The very first ARC I received was through a contest hosted by Random Buzzers. ARCs directly after that came from NetGalley. And about a couple months ago, I started branching out and requesting books from publicists and authors.
What about you guys, my fellow book bloggers? Do you have any newbie stories/advice to give?
If you're a newbie, did you think this helped?
If you're a newbie, did you think this helped?